Monday 26 February 2018

An Interview With Paul Davies From MAMMOTH WEED WIZARD BASTARD

Two of the heaviest Doom/Sludge Metal Bands currently out there – Mammoth Weed Wizard Bastard and Slomatics – have teamed up to release a breathtaking new album called Totems. We reviewed this album a few weeks back and it's became a favourite of ours here at the blog.

I caught up with Paul Davies (Guitars) from MWWB where we discussed how this album came about, The whole recording process of the album and their future plans.

Hi Paul. Thanks for doing this interview. How are things with you today. We are here to discuss your excellent new album – Totems – with the legendary Slomatics. How did this collaboration came about. As even though you both play Doom based heavy music. Your musical output has been slightly different to each other. Whose idea was to release an album together.

I've been a fan of Slomatics for years. I've not been vocal about it in interviews or whatever. I've just loved their music. In early 2017 I got an email off Dave Majury from Slomatics saying how much he loved the latest MWWB album. Obviously I was buzzing that a guy I admired liked my music and we just started chatting. Discovering we had shared interests We chatted about guitars, kraut rock and boxing and somewhere in there we both agreed it would be cool to do something involving both bands. Many bands do splits but we wanted to do an album. A self contained piece.

What can people expect from your side of the album.

Me and Wes decided to write a song each. I wrote Master and his Emissary and he wrote Eagduru. I personally Wanted to take MWWB in a heavier and harder direction. I wanted to write a proggy type thing with a long intro and an solo outro. Personally I'm really happy with both songs. They are probably our best to date. I love the drums.

The thing I love the most about Totems is this is not a split album as such. It feels very much as a collaborative and real album between yourselves and Slomatics. Was that the plan to release something that wouldn’t be seen as a “split” album but as a proper full length album.

Yeah you are right we made sure we all knew this was gonna be an album. Not just 2 doom bands throwing some songs on an album. We worked on the lyrical concepts and decided on a theme to run through it.

Did you have an easy or hard time writing and recording the album.

Personally writing was easy. Me and the drummer locked ourselves away in the rehearsal room twice a week with Jess popping in to have a look at the vocals. During the writing of Eagduru Jess was hospitalised with a broken arm so they had to finish writing it in the studio but we managed to get our side done in 2 days.

Did you record the songs the same time as Slomatics. Or where they done apart.

Due to the fact they had to fly in we recorded ours alone but we did visit SkyHammer Studios when Slomatics were there and had a few beers.

Your sound is slightly different on Totems compared to your previous albums. Is that a fair assumption to make and will you be carrying on this style of sound for future releases.

Yes that's pretty fair. We are improving as musicians and I now feel I can push Carrat (drummer) to play more exiting stuff. I also like going more proggy. More synths and songs with more parts. But still trying to be as heavy as we can. We're still gonna write long songs. The next album will have a 20 minute track at least.

What some people don’t know is that Marty (Drummer from Slomatics) appears on one of your songs (Eagduru) and Jess appears on one of Slomatics songs. Was that planned or a spur of the moment thing.

This was planned. If we'd had more time we woulda have done more collaboration.

The album is being released on Vinyl via Black Bow Records. Did you have any input to the overall design of the vinyl. Or did you leave it up to Jon from the label to decide.

Both bands agreed on the colours as we wanted to have an element of the cover in there.

The album cover is excellent as well. Who came up with that design. Was it a joint decision between yourselves and Slomatics. Did you have any disagreements at all.

We are all kinda pretty similar so it was easy to agree. We let the artist come up with a design based on ideas we both had.

Are there any plans for you and Slomatics in doing any gigs or together to promote the album.

We did Camden Underworld in February. That was amazing. Slomatics are pretty busy in 2018 and we have to record our album. We do wanna play together again but we will have to see. It may have to be in 2019.

Would you be open to doing another album such as this with any other bands in the future. Or was this a one-time deal and experience.

We won't be doing this kind of thing with any other band. If we had the opportunity to do this with Slomatics we would definitely do it again.

Has it surprised you how the Doom/Stoner Metal community has responded to your music. As you’re highly thought of within the community.

The fans response has been unreal. So are all the cool blogs and music fan websites. We get a lot of offers and support from Europe and the US. It still seems that certain promoters or magazines in the UK won't give you the time of day if you don't sound like Sleep, Electric Wizard or Kyuss. Having played festivals in Lithuania, Germany, Poland, France, Belgium and Holland in such a short career it shows that European promoters are more responsive to bands that's have their own sound.

What are your future plans for this year.. Any plans for a new album.

Yep. New album gets recorded in may. UK tour in September.

Before you go do you have anything to say to your fans.

Yeah. Thanks for all the support. It's humbling to know our music means so much to people. Well have a new album out this year and try to get out the countries we are yet to visit.

Words by Steve Howe and Paul Davies.

Thanks to Curtis at Dewar PR for arranging this interview. Totems will be available to buy on CD/DD/Vinyl via Black Bow Records from March 2018.

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